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Using Windows 7 in a Server Environment

Last response: in Windows 7
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March 18, 2011 2:32:05 PM

Hello,

I would like to know if it is a good idea to run Windows 7 Enterprise in a Server environment. Windows Server 2008 costs more than double, and both OS'es have their own IIS manager for deploying websites.

All the server roles available in Windows Server 2008 will probably not be used. So is there any downside in using Windows 7. Please be thorough in why or why not Windows 7 should be used.

Thanks
a b $ Windows 7
March 18, 2011 2:52:19 PM

IIS will only allow 10 concurrent connections on Windows 7.
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a c 352 $ Windows 7
March 18, 2011 3:25:17 PM

Not just IIS, file sharing, printer sharing, it all counts as a connection.
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Related resources
March 18, 2011 3:26:42 PM

Ijack said:
IIS will only allow 10 concurrent connections on Windows 7.


This is for the Enterprise version of Windows 7?

I came across these two articles:
1. http://deepxw.blogspot.com/2009/05/say-bye-to-half-open...
2. http://serverfault.com/questions/21131/are-there-any-co...

Are you sure the limit is 10? Accroding to the above, it looks like it can be modified to support unlimited connections. Unless I missed something.

According to the above articles, if I have windows server 2008, no sp2, will its connection limit be 10?

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a c 352 $ Windows 7
March 18, 2011 3:31:07 PM

Those hacks are for "half-open" TCP IP connections. And they are "hacks" not official from MS. A bit like you can post a way to use illegal keys to install Windows, sure it's out there, but it's not how things are done. Any Server OS does not have a connection limit, only based on what type of licensing you purchase for it.
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Best solution

a b $ Windows 7
March 18, 2011 3:42:29 PM

The IIS connection limit is separate from the file sharing one. In Windows 7 there's a limit of 20 connections for file shares.

Running IIS on Server 2008 there is no limit to the concurrent connections. This article explains it.

Try those hacks by all means. They are nothing to do with the IIS connection limit.
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March 18, 2011 3:46:53 PM

Ijack said:

Try those hacks by all means. They are nothing to do with the IIS connection limit.


Thanks for clearing that up. Half open connections mainly deal with p2p and stuff right?

THank YOU!!! I was searching for a link like that described this. Kudos man :) 
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a b $ Windows 7
March 18, 2011 4:33:34 PM

Now you know why so many people use Linux and Apache. You can't fault the price. :) 
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March 18, 2011 4:38:09 PM

Now you piqued my curiousity...is there a tool to simulate around 20 concurrent http requests? I can just host a "web site" on my computer, have router forward requests, and test this limit. I don't have access to 20 computers, nor virtual ones for that matter.
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a c 352 $ Windows 7
March 18, 2011 4:44:32 PM

invulnarable27 said:
Now you piqued my curiousity...is there a tool to simulate around 20 concurrent http requests? I can just host a "web site" on my computer, have router forward requests, and test this limit. I don't have access to 20 computers, nor virtual ones for that matter.


I think if you connect 20 times from one PC you will hit the restriction. I don't think it's based on what IP you are going from but rather connections made.
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March 18, 2011 4:47:33 PM

hang-the-9 said:
I think if you connect 20 times from one PC you will hit the restriction. I don't think it's based on what IP you are going from but rather connections made.


Thanks for the tip. Will do this as soon as I get the chance and post back in case someone else is curious as well.
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March 20, 2011 12:02:33 AM

Ijack said:
The IIS connection limit is separate from the file sharing one. In Windows 7 there's a limit of 20 connections for file shares


So ijack, this means that I would need 10+ different IP addresses visiting my hosted website running Windows 7 Enterprise, for me to actually see the error page/IIS limit?

@ hang-the-9
So I set it up to forward http requests to my computer hosting my website. I went to another computer in my house, typed in the domain name (used no-ip.com to resolve ip to domain name). I clicked refresh over 50 times repeatedly, there is no 20 connection limit you mentioned. Think they need to be separate IP's. ALSO, my browser Google chrome cached the page somehow. I disabled the port forwarding, blocked port 80 in firewall, but is still brings it up. My others browsers however are unable to make a connection as expected.
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a b $ Windows 7
March 20, 2011 7:57:11 AM

I don't know the answer to that one. I've no idea how the limit is implemented but, to avoid problems with multithreaded browsers, it would make sense that it considers all connections from one IP address as just one connection. It may even be that when you make a second request from the same PC it reuses the existing connection rather than opening a new one.
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a c 352 $ Windows 7
March 21, 2011 12:42:40 PM

invulnarable27 said:
So ijack, this means that I would need 10+ different IP addresses visiting my hosted website running Windows 7 Enterprise, for me to actually see the error page/IIS limit?

@ hang-the-9
So I set it up to forward http requests to my computer hosting my website. I went to another computer in my house, typed in the domain name (used no-ip.com to resolve ip to domain name). I clicked refresh over 50 times repeatedly, there is no 20 connection limit you mentioned. Think they need to be separate IP's. ALSO, my browser Google chrome cached the page somehow. I disabled the port forwarding, blocked port 80 in firewall, but is still brings it up. My others browsers however are unable to make a connection as expected.


Don't do a refresh. Open up separate browser tab/session for each page. And yes caching the page would kill this test as it won't hit the server for the page.
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a b $ Windows 7
March 22, 2011 12:35:28 PM

Section 3 f of the Microsoft Software License Terms for Windows 7 Professional states “Device Connections. You may allow up to 20 other devices to access software installed on the licensed computer to use only File Services, Print Services, Internet Information Services and Internet Connection Sharing and Telephony Services.” The full Microsoft Software License Terms are available from this link:

http://www.microsoft.com/About/Legal/EN/US/Intellectual...

For a server operating system for web hosting you may wish to look into Windows Web Server 2008 R2. For more information see the link below:

http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2008/en/us/2008-w...

Brandon
Windows Outreach Team- IT Pro
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a b $ Windows 7
March 22, 2011 7:07:24 PM

invulnarable27 said:
Hello,

I would like to know if it is a good idea to run Windows 7 Enterprise in a Server environment. Windows Server 2008 costs more than double, and both OS'es have their own IIS manager for deploying websites.

All the server roles available in Windows Server 2008 will probably not be used. So is there any downside in using Windows 7. Please be thorough in why or why not Windows 7 should be used.

Thanks

There's another direction to address this question. Windows 7 is a consumer OS. Windows server is a server OS. The difference is in more than just number of allowable connections. A server OS is supposed to be up 24/7. A consumer OS is not. My wife and daughter have learned to shut down their Win7 (admittedly not Enterprise) machine every night when they are through with it. Otherwise, things degrade. A server OS is meant to stay up and stay up and stay up. Managers of small server installations don't have the option of rebooting multiple times to clear problems.

My girls just look at me funny when I say "It's not a server OS, it's a consumer OS!" as if that explained everything. Honestly, don't they understand plain English?

PS - the server version isn't twice as pricey just because it's "better," but because there's a lower demand for it, or there was historically, so they have to make up their investment and profits with fewer sales. Sort of like server CPUs, or server motherboards with buffered ECC memory, or the buffered ECC memory itself...
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April 4, 2011 2:32:22 AM

Best answer selected by invulnarable27.
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